Playalinda beach… after Florida Young Naturists’ Spring Bash

Playalinda is one of the few official naturist beaches in Florida and is certainly one of the best overall. I visited it last April as part of the group outing at the Naked Spring Bash of Florida Young Naturists.

naturist 0001 Playalinda beach, Florida, USA

It’s a great beach with plenty of space whether you are with a big group or want to chill quietly enjoying the sound of waves.

view 0000 Playalinda beach, Florida, USA

If you want to enjoy the waves in a more active manner, Playalinda is known to have a pretty good swell for surfing, but it wasn’t the case at the time of my visit. However, the waves were perfect for body surfing.

naturist 0000 Playalinda beach, Florida, USA

Naked body surfing is as natural as it gets when it comes syncing with the ocean and feeling it power!

Unlike the urban Haulover Beach in Miami, where we went after FYN Spring Bash 4 years ago, Playalinda is set in a natural surrounding of the Cape Canaveral National Seashore.

naturist 0002 Playalinda beach, Florida, USA

Nudists usually congregate at the section near the farthest parking of Playalinda beach (and as the commentator indicated below, just a little further north there is an officially clothing-optional Apollo beach),

view 0001 Playalinda beach, Florida, USA

but even from there you can see well the NASA Shuttle Landing Facility… Those were the days, when you could sunbathe naked and watch the shuttle lift off into space! Nowadays you may be lucky to see the launch of a rocket by SpaceX though. So, next time I’ll try to time my visit well (and check the surf forecast too).


beach Olho de Boi, Buzios, Brazil


naturist 0002 praia Olho de Boi, Buzios, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

Olho de Boi beach is located in Buzios, Rio de Janeiro state. It requires a bit of an effort, as you’ll have to walk for a bit on a trail (along two other beaches),

naturist 0003 praia Olho de Boi, Buzios, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

before you can descend to this tiny beach. You’ll be rewarded with calm waters, where you can sometimes even spot some turtles!

naturist 0001 praia Olho de Boi, Buzios, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil

It’s a great naturist spot, and I wouldn’t go to any other beach around, especially if I had to wear a swimsuit there. Another beach of this kind in the state is Abrico. Swimming in the sea the natural way is one of the most pleasant ways to experience the contact with nature!

naturist 0000 praia Olho de Boi, Buzios, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil


secluded spot at Key Biscayne (Miami)

naturist 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Welcome to Miami! And if you think that glamorous and crowded Miami Beach is the only way to enjoy the tropical seaside, you are wrong. Key Biscayne island lies south-east of Miami Downtown, close enough to see its skyline,

view 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

but wild and remote enough to enjoy a small secluded beach with barely anyone else in sight, and totally naked if you will. (By the way, the first photo and the one below were taken at the same spot, just at different times of the day, so you can see how tides change.)

naturist 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

The northeast point of Key Biscayne, right by the fossilized reef, has a history of nude recreation, but it’s not an official nudist beach, while Virginia Key just north of it did have an official nudist beach until 1980’s. The place is known as Bear Cut beach. Maybe “bare” would be more appropriate than “bear” here, though far not all visitors bare it all, and some – actually nothing at all: a couple of fishermen were covered entirely, face included.

fisherman 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Besides humans, we also saw quite a few animals of the rare kind that actually wear something:

hermit crab 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

hermit crabs were all over the place there, from the size of a nail to the size of a palm. And luckily for them, there seemed to be no shortage of shells of various sizes.

hermit crab 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USAhermit crab 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

It was nice to wander through the mangroves and observe nature.

naturist 0003 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Besides numerous crabs, we saw quite a few crab spiders (aka spinybacked orb-weavers).

crab spider spinybacked orb-weaver 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Some of them built their webs quite high up,

crab spider spinybacked orb-weaver 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

with an impressive span between the trees.

crab spider spinybacked orb-weaver 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

I found these spiders pretty too, and hopefully there aren’t readers of this blog with arachnophobia :O (Does anyone know its scientific name btw? And if you like spiders, check this post out!)

spider 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Well, the sight of ibises would probably be more commonly appreciated 🙂

ibis 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

As we walked at the fossilized reef,

naturist 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

we also saw a heron. It didn’t seem to be bothered by our presence. I got pretty good shots of it resting,

heron 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA


heron 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

and flying.

heron 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

We also saw flocks of pelicans pass by,

pelican 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

but only a couple of them rested nearby.

pelican 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Our neighbor at the cove where we stayed was an iguana.

iguana 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

It  was climbing trees,

iguana 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

and Lee Roy followed its example.

naturist 0004 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Although majority of trees there are represented by various mangrove species, we also saw papayas

papaya 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

and coconut palms.

coconut palm-tree 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Too bad none of them had ripe fruit. These ants though seemed to be excited about something at the tip of the mangrove root, but I couldn’t figure out what it was. (BTW I later discovered that honey from mangrove blossom has a very particular fruity flavor, make sure to try it when you get a chance!)

ants on mangrove root 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Plants and animals weren’t the only thing that drew our attention though:

trash 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

unfortunately, there was quite a lot of trash too. Most of it was probably washed off from the sea. On the way out, we collected plastic bags and bottles from the cove where we stayed.

mangroves view 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Some of the bigger bits of trash though found their new life as sitting surfaces among mangroves. That’s a good way of recycling too!

mangroves view 0003 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

It also turned out to be a great place for snorkeling. I hoped to see manatees,

seaweed & corals 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

but I had to be satisfied with their potential feeding ground only, as some parts of the seafloor were covered with seaweed.

seaweed & corals 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

I was also happy to see that despite this place is known for its fossilized reef from several thousands years ago, there is some new coral growth – hopefully there will be a new live coral reef sometime soon!

seaweed & corals 0002 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USAseaweed & corals 0003 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

I saw quite a lot of fish, e.g. young barracudas (?)

fish 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

and a stingray.

ray 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

There was a lot of small fish by the mangrove roots, confirming mangroves’ role as fish nurseries. Among the bigger fish, puffers were probably most common.

As you can see, the water is very clear there, and the seafloor is clean, but I did see some glass, so be careful when you wade.

hermit crab 0003 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

Overall, it was amazing to see this pocket of wildlife right off Miami downtown, great for naturists and naturalists alike!

mangroves view 0001 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

As we were about to leave, this crab wanted to give us a good-bye hug… We weren’t quite sure.

crab 0000 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

We also had a small video shot for something very special – stay tuned for updates!

naturist 0005 Key Biscayne, Miami, Florida, USA

For now, just enjoy this view of Eddy’s jump split trying to bridge Miami downtown (on the left) with Miami Beach (on the right).

Haulover Beach

Haulover beach in Miami is  surely one of the busiest naturist beaches in the world, with reported million visitors a year. Tourists come year round and from all over the world, but I bet that New Yorkers are particularly common, considering that NYC – Miami area is by far the busiest air route in US in a “push to make South Florida New York’s sixth borough“. So I wasn’t too surprised when I stumbled upon a couple of friends from New York on my last trip there. (And that’s besides two other groups of NY friends who I knew were coming.)

naturist 0004 Haulover Beach, Miami, Florida, USA

Haulover is also one of the best organized beaches thanks to supporting organizations such as the B.E.A.C.H.E.S Foundation Institute and South Florida Free Beaches. They provide free brochures where you can read about naturist movement and activities in the area (also available online). They help to preserve this beach for naturist use, which often gets threatened given that this is one of the last undeveloped beachfront lands in Miami metropolitan area that are not part of state or national parks.

naturist 0005 Haulover beach, Miami, Florida, USA

At least for now, we’re safe to enjoy this beach as nature intended 🙂

At the same time, the beach has all basic facilities that you’d expect from an urban beach – restrooms, showers, drink water fountains, volleyball courts, food trucks, and of course lifeguards. Haulover beach is accessible, but after I was run over by car on my trip to Florida last year, my favorite way of getting to/from the beach was on Tam’s shoulders.

naturist 0002 Haulover Beach, Miami, Florida, USA

Guardhouses apparently also provide opportunity for exercising, at least according to Mat.

naturist 0003 Haulover Beach, Miami, Florida, USA

By the way, guardhouses in the clothing-optional section of the beach are painted pink, and yellow in the adjacent textile area – so, in case you go swimming along the beach it’s easy to figure out where should get off the water and return. And swimming is something you definitely should do at Haulover. The water is just perfect – clear and warm year round.

naturist 007 Haulover beach, Miami, Florida, USA

On my first visit to Haulover beach, which was with Joe and a whole bunch of people from  Florida Young Naturists event, besides having nice company at the beach, when we went for a swim we were accompanied by a school of small fish… Either they mistook us for their parents or thought we’d simply provide them shelter from sharks 🙂

In any case, they followed us for half an hour!

Sharks are sometimes spotted at Haulover too, of which you’ll be notified by the lifeguards, but it’s rarely a dangerous kind. From my experience, you should be more worried about cars in Florida…

I used to think that the only thing missing to make Haulover an all you-want-from-a-beach kind of place was surfable waves, but on my last trip I saw there a surfer too who managed to catch some waves – nothing spectacular, but he had fun. Well, I guess you can’t have it all perfect, but Haulover gets pretty to close to it when it comes to urban beaches. Altogether, it is a great place if you want to spend the day together with your friends in the altogether.

Polar-ish Bare Plunge at Fort Tilden

You may have heard about polar bear plunges on New Year’s day that are popular throughout North America, but apparently my favorite local beach at Sandy Hook hosts a special edition, Polar Bare Plunge. I only had heard about this tradition as a rumor, there’s hardly any info online, but then a friend of mine confirmed that it is indeed held on the first Sunday of the year at noon… I really wanted to go, but in the end I couldn’t make it on time and decided to go with another friend, Miguel, to a closer beach, at Fort Tilden, for our personal Polar Bare Plunge.

Well, it was unfortunate that last Sunday was the warmest day in weeks, with the maximum temperature at +13˚C (55˚F), but nevertheless it seems crazy to me to think I went skinny-dipping just 3 days ago, that it’s -13˚C (9˚F) right now…

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It felt nice to undress outdoors for the first time in a while, and it didn’t feel that cold, I [almost] enjoyed the ocean breeze… We were not sure about the water though.

naturist 0000  Polar Bare Plunge, New York, NY, USA

So, we warmed up by running and jumping.

naturist 0001  Polare Bare Plunge, New York, NY, USA

Miguel rightfully noticed that the more we’d wait, the colder we’d get and ran into the ocean…

naturist 0004  Polar Bare Plunge, New York, NY, USA

I couldn’t figure out from his screaming whether he was in pain or in joy,

naturist 0003  Polar Bare Plunge, New York, NY, USA

but as soon as he ran out of the water, I went in.

naturist 0005  Polar Bare Plunge, New York, NY, USA

Believe it or not, it didn’t feel that painfully cold… perhaps because the water was so cold that the body just got numb immediately :O I ran out after a few seconds, and we repeated the whole thing a couple more times.

This was certainly not the coldest time I’ve been skinny-dipping – I plunged into an ice hole in Moscow on a proper Russian winter day… but then I was just few steps away from a sauna! This time, we could only get dry with towels and warm up by running, so I think it was fortunate after all that the day was warm (for January in New York).  I think I have luck with visiting Fort Tilden on those freak-warm days in otherwise typically cold months – I was there once in the end of November and also in the beginning of April. Next year, I’ll try to make it to Polar Bare Plunge at Sandy Hook though. My friend who made it there this year said there were around 30 people testing the water. We have a year (minus one week) to spread the word, so maybe next time there’ll be a lot more – the more the merrier for such an occasion!


Sea is the cradle of life, not a trash bin!

I already complained about butts on the beach (of course I mean cigaret butts), as some people think it’s totally fine to throw them in the sand, but this cartoon will hopefully make you think twice if you want to throw some garbage in the sea itself.

It was kind of painful to see a plastic bag floating at the coral reef in the Red Sea in Israel, and that was one of the cleanest waters I have swum!

How to turn your friend into a nudist + Moving naturally at Jones Beach, NY

Last summer I discovered yet another naked beach not far from New York City: a remote part to the east of Jones Beach. It’s a long (at least 15 min) walk from the main part/bus stop/parking, but given that it’s a walk at the beach, you can just as well enjoy this part of the deal. It’s much closer and easier to get to by public transport than the Lighthouse beach and is almost twice cheaper than the ferry to Sandy Hook, two official nudist beaches in NYC area. So I went there quite often and brought some of my friends visiting during summer. Most of that remote part of Jones beach is rather empty, except for a short stretch that gets busy on the weekends.

Natasha was eager to try her yoga poses at the beach, but for some reason she wasn’t ready to get rid of her clothes, although the idea of naturism is not foreign to her. I thought she just needed some booze boost.

Well, that menacingly blue concoction that we bought at the bar at the main part of Jones beach was non-alcoholic (and maybe that was why it failed to work).

The next step was to turn her upside down,

and after a couple of such twists, she turned into a nudist 😉

Not only did she let off her inhibitions,

she also braved the waves, that were quite rough on that day!

There was a couple of unexpected boomers, but it was part of the fun.

Since that remote part of Jones Beach is relatively empty, it’s perfect for jogging.

Once I brought there my new acquaintance Pétur, who is an instructor of MovNat in Iceland. MovNat (abbreviation of ‘moving naturally) is a system of movement skills that is based on natural patterns (taking into account our development – how toddlers start moving, evolution and comparative biology – how other animals move, etc.) as opposed to many modern running and fitness techniques that use artificial patterns (e.g., ‘hi tech’ shoes, all kinds of crazy gym equipment). Their logo is ‘Explore your true nature’, so needless to say, the first time I heard about it, I thought it should be done without clothes.

And there I was, learning to ‘run naturally’ at the Jones Beach. I’m definitely planning to explore more of MovNat in the future.